Evangelion Power Sources

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Power Sources

Evangelion Power

Ritsuko: Then, I'll review it one more time.
Normally the Eva runs off electricity provided by an umbilical cable.
In emergencies, it can switch to an internal battery, with an active life of one minute at full power, and no more than five minutes in the minimal activity gain mode.
This is the limitations of our current technology.

Umbilical Cable

Umbilical cable attached

Umbilical Cables are the electrical power cables used to link Evangelions in the field to external power supplies in Tokyo-3. The connectors attaching to the rear of an Evangelion are visually similar to a three-point plug. Two large holes in the connector allow a retro-rocket to slow its descent and prevent damage when it is discarded. Tokyo-3 has a multitude of power buildings that house connectors and cable for an Evangelion to switch to a new cable, in case the old cable has reached its maximum length or been severed.

Eva-02 switching to a new cable.

Umbilical cables can be used outside Tokyo-3. A portable version of the umbilical cable is seen in use in Episode 08, being airlifted via helicopter and set on the deck of an aircraft carrier, drawing power from the ship's reactor. Umbilical cables can be connected to other power sources and used far away from Tokyo-3's power supply, as seen in Episode 09, Episode 10 and Episode 18.

Internal Batteries

Internal Battery countdown timer.

Every Evangelion (except for the Mass Production Evangelions and Eva-04) has an internal battery, which functions as an emergency power pack in cases where the Umbilical Cable would be impractical to use, or if it has been disconnected/severed. The batteries have been used several times throughout the series, notably during the two times (once in Episode 03 and again in Episode 25') that an Evangelion's power cable has been severed.

The internal batteries allow at most 5 minutes of operation before running out, and frequently fall short of this depending on which power mode the Evangelion is operating in. They represent the limit of Nerv's present technology.

Evangelions are show running out batteries in Episode 03, Episode 08, Episode 09, notably in Episode 16 and Episode 19, and in Episode 25'. Should the Evangelions power run out, the unit becomes completely lifeless, unable to even move much less fight. However, Berserk Evangelions appear to be able to muster power from other sources in order to move themselves for brief periods even when all other power has run out.

S² Engines

The Mass Production Evangelions feature internal S² Engines, which allow them to operate indefinitely. The units feature no umbilical cable ports, and well outlast Eva-02's internal battery.

Eva-01 also absorbs an S² Organ from Zeruel, but it is unclear to what extent, if any, this has been integrated into the units power system. While the Eva is shown with an umbilical cable when fighting Armisael, during The End of Evangelion, Shinji's entry plug system remain active for an unusually long period of time.

Spare Batteries

Eva-02' recharging in the field using a "spare"

In Evangelion 3.0, Wille possess technology which allows their Evas to be rapidly recharged in the field. Huge bomb-like "spare" battery tanks allow the Evangelions to enter an accelerated recharge cycle by placing their hands through a cavity in the battery. The Evangelions now also feature a "power save" mode function, which kicks in when the Eva reaches 10% of its remaining battery charge, reducing the units capabilities in exchange for the ability to reach a spare for a recharge.

Uses/Benefits

The batteries are mentioned in-show to provide power for five minutes, or one minute at full power. However, it must be noted that the show itself is not consistent in enforcing this rule - for instance, there is no proper reason why the batteries should last five minutes during the battles against Shamshel and the Mass Production Evangelions but little over one minute in the Israfel battle.

With the umbilical cable connected, the Evangelions must connect a new length of cable whenever the cable reaches its maximum length. The battery allows Evangelions a short period during which their mobility is not hampered by the need to stop and change cables.

Battery Packs on the Eva shoulder pylons

Battery supplies can be extended without the umbilical cable, using large disposable batteries located on the Eva's shoulder pylons. These provide an unspecified extra operating time and are used in the battle against Matarael.

Evangelions
Evangelions (general)
Failed Evangelion Prototypes | Simulation Bodies
Eva-00 | Eva-01 | Eva-02 | Eva-03 | Eva-04 | Mass Production Evangelions (Evas 05~13)
Rebuild of Evangelion: Mark.04 | Eva-05 | Mark.06 | Eva-08 | Mark.09 | Eva-13
Eva 8+2 | Mass Production Evangelions | Failures of Infinity
Other: Extracanonical Evas